Whether you are the CEO of a major corporation or a data entry clerk at a small office, business skills are important for any working environment, particularly if you are ambitious and would like to progress in your career. Skills such as financial management, problem-solving, and team building are all essential for the success of any business and can be applied to other areas of your life like home and family management. So, whether you are an experienced professional or just getting started on your career, here are three ways you can develop your business skillset:
- Take a master’s degree in applied economics
If you have already gained core skills through work experience and a bachelor’s degree, taking a further master’s degree is a great way of consolidating and developing your business skillset. A Boston College applied economics degree, for example, will teach you the rigorous analytical skills needed to make data-driven decisions through both theory and practical teaching. Armed with these skills, you will have the technical skills and theory needed to analyze data and create effective strategies to ensure your business’s success.
Despite their name, soft skills, such as communication and listening, can be incredibly difficult to learn. However, they are equally as important to an effective business as ‘hard’ skills like specific technical knowledge and training. You might find it useful to take a course aimed at developing your soft skills. As soft skills can be applied to all areas of your life, a useful course may not necessarily be focussed on the business world. For example, joining an amateur soccer team will help you to develop teamwork and leadership skills which will carry over into the workplace.
- Find a mentor
A mentor is a highly experienced industry professional who works with you to pass on invaluable guidance and support to help you progress in your career. They might hold a position that you have ambitions to work towards, thus helping you to develop any skills and experience required to increase your chances of interview success. Consider which particular skillsets you would like to develop and find a mentor who is particularly proficient in that area from whom you can learn. For example, if you would like to develop your leadership skills with the aim of progressing to a leadership position in the near future, choose a mentor who is recognized as a successful leader in your business.
Many books have been written about the various skills required for business, and reading them can be incredibly helpful in broadening your knowledge and understanding of a topic and the theory behind it. Ask colleagues for recommendations; your company may even have a ready library ofbusiness literature available to help employees develop their knowledge. It is also useful to keep up to date with any new books and research published on business skills to ensure that your skillset is kept regularly updated and ahead of the game.